Just a couple things

March 31, 2017

For any who don’t know and those interested in such things,
today and tomorrow Mecum Auctions is holding a tractor auction
at the Mississippi Valley Fairgrounds. There is rumored to be
400 tractors at the sale including a 1938 Minneapolis Moline
Comfortractor. One of about 40 left in existence.

So we went to get groceries earlier and the way they had half
the aisles blocked it looks like the store is preparing to move
the things we know how to find to a secret new location. We can
hardly wait.

After groceries got umpacked and stored in their designated
spots I took camera in hand to determine if I could locate any
colorful birds or new critters. It seemed like the birds and
other critters stayed in their living rooms to keep warm and
dry instead of venturing out into the drizzly chill.

But a critter was spotted, and although not among my favorite
species, I managed to get a few pictures.

Both pictures were taken on my Nikon and the settings were
shutter 1/500th of a second, aperture f/5.6 and ISO 900.

Not sure why this possum chose our neighborhood to scout but
it could be worse. There is a bright side to thinking about
this creature. And that is that possums are about eight times
less likely to carry rabies than wild dogs.

Of course to my knowledge we have no wild dogs in our area,
but this is one less thing to worry about. At any rate, this
one was too busy trying to be invisible to cause much harm.

Enjoy our Friday and the weekend. It will only seem like a
few fun days before Monday comes around. Now I have to find
a chocolate chip cookie for my sweet tooth.
Comments are always welcome.


A clarification

March 30, 2017

I have omitted information in previous posts and will try to
rectify that. So to that end, if you bear with me, I’ll
explain. The missing information concerns what I shoot my
pictures with and the settings used when doing it.

When taking most pictures I use my Nikon D 3300 with a Tamron
70-300mm lens attached. Since I haven’t figured out how to take
a picture of a camera with said camera, the above picture was
taken with my Sony Bloggie camera. The settings were shutter:
1/30 of a second, aperture f/2.8, and ISO 250.

The Nikon is considered an entry level DSLR and the Sony is a
pocket camera. Both work for what I expect and I have been very
happy with both. I prefer manual settings and manual focus as
the settings can make a picture pop and the manual focus gives
you total control on the sharpness.

The picture of the ground hog above was taken on the Nikon
with the lens extended to 300mm the shutter was 1/500th of a
second, aperture f/5.6, and the ISO 400.

I shoot in JPEG and not RAW. I don’t know enough about RAW to
be comfortable but I do know it uses more memory. I don’t have
any photo editing software and use Widows Paint to resize the
pictures or crop. I do have one app that will “automatically”
color the picture. It isn’t used often because it isn’t very
reliable.

And there you have the nickel tour of my picture taking
process. It isn’t pretty, but it is how I do it. Enjoy the
rest of our Thursday, the weekend is just a dream away.
Comments are always welcome.


Of rainy days

March 29, 2017

When I got up this morning we decided to take a little cruise.
Well, the wife did anyway. So we cruised about 100 miles north
to a little river town, cruised around the town, and came back.

The sky was filled with clouds that promised rain and
delivered on that promise about 30 miles north of home on the
return trip. It has been one of those days you know it’s
daytime but can’t see the sun.

It wasn’t as dark as night yet put a damper on any happy
thoughts. And it looks like it’s going to rain through tomorrow
night. But the birds and critters were still out an we spied a
couple eagles looking for prey and all kinds of critters.

We didn’t stop to eat because they replaced our favorite
restaurant, which served breakfast 24/7, with a Chick Filet.
I have nothing against chicken, it just isn’t our preferred
dining experience while cruising for the day. I prefer
breakfast or the biggest burger allowed by law. The wife does
not share my enthusiasm for such fare.

So for the next few days if you live on the east coast of Iowa
and wish to go outside, you will get wet. That’s not a problem
as I have the gear. I just don’t want my camera getting wet.
As we’ve said before, enjoy our Wednesday as it is the last
one we’ll get this month.

Don’t forget Saturday is April Fool’s Day. It never fails that
somebody has to try to put one over on us. Now I must go forage
for some tasty morsel to keep my strength up.
Comments are always welcome.


Wonder product?

March 28, 2017

Ever wonder about coconuts? Coconut shreds have been around
for a while and some of us have had coconut milk from a
freshly opened coconut. Yet now we also have coconut flour,
coconut water, coconut butter, and coconut oil.

The latter we’ll talk about in this post. The name coconut oil
is a misnomer as it doesn’t taste like coconut and it’s a lot
thicker than any other oil I’ve seen. It is anti-carcinogenic,
anti-inflammatory, an antioxidant, and nontoxic.

I have tried taking a tablespoon of it, letting in dissolve on
my tongue, and then swishing it around my mouth for as long as
I can stand it. My teeth felt cleaner, but I haven’t made the
recommended 20 minutes yet.

Some uses I haven’t tried-

Age spots, apply coconut oil on the age spots and they will
fade.

If you apply it directly to bruises it will speed up the
healing by reducing swelling and redness.

Got scrapes or cuts? Apply the oil and it forms a chemical
layer that protects the wound from dust, bacteria, and virus.

Sun burn? Rub liberal amounts of coconut oil on the red areas.

It can also help with breastfeeding, calcium absorption,
digestion, lung function, nausea, nose bleeds, gum health, and
mental cognition.

Coconut oil, taken internally, can help prevent or relieve the
following.

Indigestion, allergies, asthma, cancer, colds and flu,
migraines, stomach ulcers, and more.

As if that wasn’t enough to get me to buy some you can also
use it as an insect repellent. Just mix coconut oil with some
peppermint oil extract and rub it on exposed skin.

If you run out of favorite furniture polish you just add a
little lemon juice to some coconut oil and polish away.

There are many more claimed uses, we just know we had good
luck using it as a mouth rinse. If we have to be surrounded by
the stuff, we may as well find a use for it.

Have a great Tuesday, it’s the last one we get this month.
Comments are always welcome.


It seemed so real

March 27, 2017

What is it with squirrels? The other night I made some
burritos topped with 5 alarm chili for my midnight snack and
later there were squirrels in my dream. These were not ordinary
squirrels either. They were evil spawns of Satan who were
plotting to take over the world.

The next morning I took my camera outside and the first thing
I spy is a squirrel on top of the neighbors roof. Not your run
of the mill ordinary squirrels, but one with an attitude. It
started chattering at me like crazy.

Oh yeah, the dream. So I dreamed that a militant group of
nomadic squirrels were planning to take over the world and they
didn’t know I was listening in on the plans. I can be sneaky
when there is a need.

The plan was simplicity itself in that it involved the general
mistrust of others that is rampant, at least in our country.
The evil critters were going to bring down society without
any violence or shots fired. Our government, religion, schools,
even healthcare.

The outlaw squirrels would simply wait until someone in charge
held a meeting and when that someone got to the key point of
their speech a volunteer squirrel would climb up their leg and
snuggle in their skivvies. The speech would be disrupted and
those who didn’t see the squirrel enter the pants would think
the speaker was going insane.

Plans were made to ensure the volunteer could run back down
the pants and to the nearest exit before medical help arrived.
Nobody saw the squirrel go in, nobody saw it leave, but they
did observe the important speaker jumping up and down faster
than a redneck at a hoe down.

To the untrained eye it would appear all people in important
positions had gone off the deep end. After all, would you
believe someone who jumps up in the middle of speech, starts
cussing, and makes moves not normally seen outside of an
exorcism. Trust would be at all time low and protests would
reach record highs.

It was at that point in the plans that the squirrels noticed
me. I somehow made it back inside without a squirrel up my leg
and considered myself lucky. Needless to say, I’m a little
leery of squirrels yet today. I’m having a pizza tonight. Enjoy
our Monday and look out for squirrels.
Comments are always welcome.


Give me strength

March 26, 2017

I’ve been real good at not shouting at the TV lately, until
this morning. The wife likes to watch the morning “news” shows,
I do not. The reason I began to yell at the talking head giving
his opinion of the news is what he called a poll.

Said poll, which covered the screen, announced 81% of
Americans cannot agree on basic facts. What? Wait a minute. The
talking head did not elaborate on what type of facts but did
say this disagreement went along political party lines.

Let’s go out on a limb and say I’m a conservative and my
listener is a liberal. That means whatever fact comes out of
mouth would instantly be disputed by a said listener because
of their political party? If so we are all surely going to hell
in a hand basket in the express lane.

We are a divided nation and this is part of the reason why.
One could condone not accepting someone else s opinion, but I just
cannot wrap my brain around the idea that people can’t agree on
facts.

Have so many lies been told so many times, and with a straight
face, that people are believing them? As of now I will not be
watching any “news” programs on TV. Enjoy our Sunday for
tomorrow begins a new week.
Comments are always welcome.


Sunday snicker

March 25, 2017

There were two Catholic Boys, Timothy Murphy and Antonio Secola, whose lives paralleled each other in amazing ways.

In the same year Timothy was born in Ireland, Antonio was born in Italy. Faithfully they attended parochial school from kindergarten through their Senior year in high school. They took their vows to enter the priesthood early in college and upon graduation became priests.

Their careers had come to amaze the world; but, it was generally acknowledged that Antonio was just a cut above Timothy in all respects. Their rise through the ranks of Bishop, Archbishop and finally Cardinal was meteoric to say the least, and the Catholic world knew that when the present Pope died, it would be either Timothy or Antonio who would become the next Pope.

In time the Pope did die, and the College of Cardinals went to work. In less time than anyone had expected, white smoke rose from the chimney, and the world waited to see who they had chosen.

The world, Catholic, Protestant and secular was surprised to learn that Timothy Murphy had been elected Pope!

Antonio was beyond surprise, he was devastated, because even with all Timothy’s gifts, Antonio knew he was the better qualified. With gall that shocked the Cardinals, Antonio asked for a private session with them in which he candidly asked, “Why Timothy?”

After a long silence, one old Cardinal took pity on the bewildered Antonio and rose to reply, “We knew you were the better of the two, but we just could not bear the thought of the leader of the Roman Catholic Church being called Pope Secola.